SWEIFIEH – Bishop Shomali was solemnly inducted as the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem’s Episcopal Vicar for Jordan at a Mass in the Church of St. Mary of Nazareth in Sweifieh, located in the western district of Amman, in the presence of the Apostolic Administrator, Archbishop Pierbattista Pizzaballa, Patriarch Emeritus of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, Archbishop Fouad Twal, and Bishop Maroun Lahham, Bishop Salim Sayegh and Bishop Giacinto-Boulos Marcuzzo.
During the homily and before a large number of priests, religious and faithful, Bishop Shomali paid tribute to his predecessor, Msgr. Maroun Lahham who served for the last five years as Patriarchal Vicar for Jordan.
Bishop Shomali emphasized the “threefold mission” specifically delegated to bishops and priests: Evangelization, Sanctification with the help of the seven sacraments, and Pastoral service as a service of charity and compassion to individuals and families.
Citing St Paul, he recalled that the Church constitutes the body of Christ, one body, of which Christ is the head and the faithful are its members, for an indivisible community, including families, fraternities and communities, scouts as well as all associations working for the good of the Church.
Bishop Shomali also called for greater collaboration and ever closer communion with other Orthodox, Armenian and Evangelical churches, stressing the need to work more and more jointly at the local level.
Finally, the new Patriarchal Vicar for Jordan stressed that Christians and Muslims, when they live harmoniously, contribute to building a more just society for its citizens, waiting for the coming of the Kingdom of Heaven. As he finished his homily, he also invited the faithful to pray especially for peace in Palestine, Syria, Iraq, and for the prosperity of Jordan.
Album by: ©Osama Toubasi and Souren Khodanian